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Death Engineering

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    Mad Scientist
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  1. "We're not in Kansas anymore!" Using the Vall lander's ascent stage as a basic lander, Jeb set down in several spots on Bop's surface and got loads of Science!, including a pic on top of The Kraken. There was a nearly two-year wait until the Kerbin return window, so kept the lander attached until the last moment to give the crew some extra breathing room. This is going to be a long mission! Dropped the wee lander and left Bop orbit with just over 1,000 m/s of ▲V available. Luckily, with a two-pass gravity boost past Tylo, this will be enough. Dropped the interplanetary module and finished off the Kerbin encounter burn with the Kerbin entry pod. Brought the crew down safe in the eastern plains, with a MET of over thirteen years! More than 5.6k and about 3m from this 145k launch. Looking good to complete this challenge with some kind of silly Eeloo station/base mission. May have to unlock the VAB to get the unlimited part count when I'm ready to start that design, but for now unlocked the tech tree enough to get all the science parts from the later nodes (Seismometer and Atmospheric). Also made some KSC upgrades: KSC Upgrade Status: [■] [ ] Administration Building [■] [ ] Astronaut Complex [■] [■] Mission Control [■] [■] Launch Pad [■] [■] Research and Development [ ] [ ] Runway [ ] [ ] Spaceplane Hangar [■] [■] Tracking Station [■] [ ] Vehicle Assembly Building *New Upgrade Admin Strategies: Patents Licensing - 25% Leadership Initiative - 25% Funds in the Bank: 521,267 Science points available: 4954.6
  2. No it isn't, not even at Level I. Mars and Duna are not at the same inclinations so there's that. At Level II you don't launch from equatorial, which changes the starting orbit. At Level III there are life support needs. At "2.5x", well.. \
  3. Moon Orbital Science Spent some time orbiting the Moon with Bob and Bill getting as much science as they could inside of a few orbits. The unpressurized Mk. 1 pod doesn't give the crew any room to stretch their legs, so by the time they're on the return-leg they start "hearing voices" and "losing concentration". Welcome to my world. Earth Station I Used the same version of this unnecessarily part-heavy booster to get first an Earth space station and then a Moon station into place to complete 's-only contracts. The Moon version needed a kicker-stage to get out there and had to burn some of its onboard reserves to finalize the orbit. Moon Station I This station looks bigger than it is; that Jr. docking port gives some perspective, but still this is a 5-crew station with supplies on board for only 15 days for maximum crew. Luckily, we're a loooong ways off from multi-crew pods so there isn't much point in having more than one crew out there. Simple Science Plane Took this 30-part plane all around FL, VA and CA looking for science, but keeping uplink to KSC to transmit the data becomes a problem. Also, powering the Goo and Materials Bay is problematic. All it needs is a few solar panels or a fuel cell, but 30 parts..! Moon Rescue and Crewed Moon Station..maybe Our rescue contract is stuck around the Moon, and our Moon station contract requires a Pilot.. so hopefully the rescued kerb will be a pilot, or we'll be flying another crew out the the Moon at our expense. We still don't have launch escape systems or any real redundancy in our propulsion, short of a pittance of RCS ▲V, so crew-safety is marginal. Next time.. is Nenard a Pilot? Will their be enough ▲V to rendezvous with the station if he is?
  4. I totally ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ hate that 'You didn't really want that orbit, did you? Good, cuz we changed it when you weren't looking.' special feature of KSP. Can you please elaborate your method for mitigating that?
  5. Earth Orbital Crew Launch Now that crew pods are unlocked, several minor variants of this launcher put crew into orbit. Note the sustainer central core... that is a stack of fuel tanks! The Moon orbital variant swapped out the SRB's for two LFO boosters.. all comprised of those silly little pog-shaped fuel tanks! Part-count monsters required me to upgrade the VAB as well as by the time we started designing a crew Moon lander, the mass was exceeding 140t. First rendezvous / docking / Crew Rescue / First Space Station...? Really? Had a fairly effective mission/pair of launches with an uncrewed launch perform our first rendezvous with Buzz Kerman (who turned out to be a scientist... checks out). While Buzz relaxed in comfort, Bill went up to dock with Buzz to earn some interesting distinctions, including 'First station around Earth'. Hmm.. I think a two-crew station leaves much to be desired as an actual 'station'! Oh well, I'll take the . Just some of the funds from these two launches - also rescued Buzz! Buzz EVA's to his awaiting taxi home... after doing a quick docking, that is
  6. More stable with AIRBRAKES Since I technically failed at my own challenge, I felt compelled to re-fly this mission with a few modifications. Other than upgrading the lander to support two crew , added the AIRBRAKE seen above and a few other tweaks to make it more stable and ▲V balanced. Two Kerbs on Mars! Flew the exact same crew as last time, even, but this time we landed somewhere quite flat. When doing the entry and landing descent, I could see some extremely diverse (and dangerous..!) terrain. Steep Terrain in the background I'd say there are more places to land on Mars that are "safe", compared to Duna, but the mountainous areas would be very tricky to come down on flat ground. I'd say a powered descent would really be the safest way; use chutes to slow down then cut them to carefully choose the landing zone. Crew back aboard the TRW spacecraft Mars looks tiny at the stock-sized KSRSS, maybe even smaller than Duna. This pic is from 100k orbit. Back home Crew boards the 6-crew Earth Entry Module and jettisons the fairing before ditching the main vessel into deep space. Will be re-flying this challenge on the Level III 2.5x level, probably using a 'Copenicus' style design, which I've done in JNSQ so should be reasonably similar. Will be using the Kerbalism mod for LS/Fatigue, which will be something new for me. I'm doing a KSRSS 2.5x 'hard mode' career now over here, but haven't left Earth orbit yet, so haven't really evaluated how Kerbalism is going to complicate things - Val already has 10% 'lifetime radiation' and 'started hearing voices' in her 30-day Earth orbit mission. This Mars landing challenge is going to be much more involved next time around!
  7. Hybrid Solid/Liquid 3-Stage Moon Flyby Probe Had to fly various builds of the same two-stage sounding rockets from Wallops and Kennedy before had enough science to build this 30-part Moon flyby probe. Still learning the fundamentals of Kerbalism, so not every flight got the most of each launch, but learning this mod is turning out to be very rewarding. I had no idea the depth of being able to configure science parts into the probe-core! Here I was carrying the temperature science part around when I could have instead just plugged one onto the probe with the Kerbalism menu in the part setup. Not quite a new game, but definitely more complete feeling with Kerbalism. Orbital Sample Return Probe Using the same hybrid SRB first stage, LFS second stage this sample return probe brought Earth and Moon space science back. With only 30 parts, couldn't afford a heat shield, so stuck with the engine bell and had no problems. Upgraded the design for Moon flyby speeds to avoid damage. Was a little put-out that I couldn't get the Science Jr. back from space without it exploding. This is likely by design and presumably needs either a contained re-entry capsule or more likely is intended to force having crew to remove the sample and pack it into a storage slot on the command pod. Orbital Sample Return Probe Moon surface return probe Had a contract from Strategia to land on three different Moon biomes so did one simple landing with just a few science parts before earning enough parts to build this Moon sample return probe. Landed (I think..) five of these on the Moon to satisfy the Strategia contract and a few others we picked up which earned enough science to finally start flying crew! Was I'd say about 25 launches to get to this point, including the sounding rockets and ones that had problems... Several LV-T45 Ignition Failures Kerbalism's failure model forces the launches to light liquid engines first, throttle up, then light the SRB's and stage the launch clamps. Add's a nice dimension to the missions, but I can see the crew probes in the next R&D node and there aren't any escape towers in there.. little nervous about that. Crew into Space! Several crew missions were flown in historic-style progression with sub-orbital, then Earth Orbital then Moon flyby missions. We'll soon be able to unlock the docking port and maneuvering thrusters, but those are on separate nodes and that likely means doing some aircraft science to take a look around the place. There is a rescue contract up to "Save Buzz Kerman, so I've obviously accepted that!
  8. Maybe circumnavigation isn't where my head is. For example, there was a challenge up a few years ago to visit all the stock ground stations. That rocked cuz I'd been literally everywhere but my own back yard. I did it three times in three craft, including the stock Albatross as an endurance challenge. Mebbe 'Hit certain landmarks' or 'Highest/lowest elevation'.. 'Pole to Pole'.. 'LA to NY'.. 'Cannonball Run'..
  9. This is pretty entertaining and 100% creds for the "uncut" - that take guts. Going to start from the top and try to catch up.. good thing I'm at work and have loads of spare time.
  10. *trips over rock.. tumble tumble..* "Done!"
  11. Have started working on this challenge. Just to clarify, getting payload into orbit is only permitted using SRB's? Or, can we have an SRB with a liquid insertion/Duna transfer stage? Thanks @Watermel00n
  12. Ha my cats would have a great time with that!
  13. This is a very impressive thread! I really like the way you are bringing in real-world historical documentation. I could easily see this thread becoming an information source for space history. Might take time but, for example, Googling 'AAP Venus Flyby' brings up a pic of my mission from 8 years ago! Keep up the great work!
  14. You are landing in the forest! Totally enjoying this thread and don't feel like you have to rush through it. The hardest part about a long-term mission like this is not getting personally burned-out.
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